The Desert

Today’s post is not like any other post, and soon you will know why. I was looking forward to describing my feelings towards an experience which would take me back to the early years of my childhood, back in Arabia where I was born. Back to the desert which carries a unique daunting beauty in my heart. While some might see it as an empty boiling oven which could swipe someones’s existence in a few seconds, I personally, find its golden colors – especially at dusk – create a fantastical piece of art deciphering a land which is flat and barren with brownish orange sand merging into the purple navy blue skies!

In the Hussant family, our children are referred to as “les enfants du desert” by their cousins who live in France. Knowing this, a child of the desert cannot but admire its charm and oneness.

Moreover, I know that one day they will look back at those memories with nostalgia and sentimentally remember all the joy they have attained when we once lived in beautiful Abu Dhabi.

Last weekend, we planned on having a BBQ with our friends somewhere in the desert. However, with little Miss D’s sickness, I had to stay with her while the boys went with their dad and enjoyed their time on the warm soft dunes.

Since I usually discuss the topics which I write with my children, one of them got excited and suggested that he records down his experience about this trip. He wanted to describe his feelings and to highlight the importance as to why children should explore nature. What an amazing learning opportunity he has provided me with! I could not but proudly concede to his request! And this is what he wrote;

“The desert is known for being amongst the special places on Planet Earth which has its own mysterious secrets. Last Friday, my brothers, my dad, and I went to the desert with a few friends to spend the afternoon and have a BBQ. My sister D was sick, so mum had to stay with her! Anyway, it took us around an hour and twenty minutes before finally arriving to this beautiful place which was located in the middle of nowhere.

The reasons why I love going to places like that are the following:

  • In the desert, you feel free, and completely detached from the big stressful city that I get tired of after a certain moment. Moreover, such trips are exceptional as they allow me to explore the sensations of nature away from the brick houses, glass towers, cars, and pollution.
  • As an adventurous child, it makes me feel as if I am on a quest to find treasures. Actually, we dug a hole and found some crystals! Later when it started to get dark, we built our own fire and roasted some tasty marshmallows!
  • Out there, you can do whatever you want. We played football, Frisbee, and badminton. We even flew kites! I liked the feeling of having the wind blow on my face. Finally, sliding down and climbing up the dunes was awesome.
  • At the end of the day, I wished I could stay there for the rest of the weekend. I had sand in my hair and in my pants. I was very dirty but felt very happy as well.

I recommend such outings to everyone, even those who think that desert outings are tiring.”

Ramy Hussant

If you liked this post, please share it on your social media page and thank you all for your continuous support!

A special thank you goes to the dear friends who have taken those lovely pictures.

Advertisements

Fall; the Rejuvenating Season

Whenever October beautifully and slowly folds in, I reminisce over the allure season and its warm colors.

To me, Fall reflects a reality of change and modification. One day, like those Autumn leaves, we will set off and leave to a journey elsewhere. To that, I celebrate this Truth through the poem below;

Brown, orange and red

Each leaf drops down dead.

Yet, there is beauty in that

Highlighting the fact

That at one point any entity comes to an end –

Yes, that is the main message I send!

Dried leaves crush under my feet

Making music down the street.

Mellowed richness gather by the side

Saying good bye to my stride.

They don’t quit, they just leave

To another life, they believe!

Crispy cool air brushes at my cheeks,

Then, from a tree a squirrel peaks,

Longing for this season to arrive

As it hops, looks around, and hive.

The first smells of the fireplace,

In my nostrils, leave wood trace.

The crimson and scarlet colors

Scatter all over like feathers.

Keeping me warm as I walk

Making me unable to talk.

Pumpkins, acorns, berries, and corn

Honeyed meadows are born.

Wearing a burgundy scarf and a golden crown

Nature astounds me with its gypsy gown.

With every leaf fluttering to the ground

My heavy burdens are released and drowned.

It’s at this time of the year

I feel I have nothing to fear.

Like the balanced day and night

The good equals the evil on the inside.

Making me assess my soul,

Asking where I’m heading

And what is my goal?

The impermanence of life can be seen

Felt and absorbed with a mind so keen.

Let the darkness inside settle still

Until it frosts to a complete chill.

Give the Light the time to grow

Work on oneself before you go.

It’s true that every phase will soon be gone,

But a soul is constantly on the run.

Floating and twirling in many a form,

Thirsty for that bright Truth to swarm.

Filled with hope I float along,

In this caramelized paradise where I belong.

Feeling happy and in peace,

All my agony has been released!

Autumn, life with you is just a start

A beginning of a new cycle, there is no doubt!

Because when one existence says adieu

A new one blooms in another milieu.

Rania Hussant

October 1, 2017

P.S.: These pictures were taken twelve years ago when I used to live in France.

My Flower in the Desert

In the desert, when you were born,

You were so tiny,

I couldn’t even hear you moan.

I looked at you,

Not believing my eyes

‘Cause I’ve never held a baby of that size.

A tough preemie you were,

My determined and resilient girl.

A spirit with ultimate power

You bloomed into my Dahlia flower.

A lovely combination you are

Just like that burning star;

Hard and smooth as a golden pearl,

Your character enjoys any dare.

But also soft and filled with love

Your cuteness flutters up above.

I adore watching the sparkle in your eyes

As you ask, inquire, and analyze.

You also have that element of fun.

Sometimes playing a pun,

Other times crying out a giggle

And around you turn in a wiggle.

Books bring you joy,

Filled with stories you enjoy

‘Again’, you ask with delight

Ready to hear more every night.

I love how you care

Asking about your brothers’ welfare.

At the same time you boss them around

Stepping your foot firmly onto the ground.

I adore your determination

And I look at you with admiration.

You dance, laugh, and play

Cry, nag, tease and sway.

You chatter, talk, squeak and sing

And with all this you do bring,

Colorful emotions to my heart.

I so pray we would never part.

Your will to live and thrive,

Like that flower which has strived

Out of the perched dry sand

And blossoming proudly as you stand,

Is what makes me blessed, joyful

And forever and ever grateful!

Rania Hussant – September 2017

Photo credit; rachahallakphotography

Working Mother’s Day with Mamas Garden

Rouba Dbouk Sleiman: Managing Director and owner of plant-based, healthy alternative food and medicinal products, Mammas Garden.

. What are some of the challenges you face as a working mom?

The biggest challenge any working woman would face is the “mommy guilt” feeling, managing your working hours and taking into consideration your kids wants and needs at the same time without one affecting the other. Especially at start-up time, things get easier once the business starts to pick up.

To work with the “mommy guilt” feeling, I started to train and involve my children in as many activities as I can. So instead of separating my work from my home, knowing that I believe in what I’m establishing, I decided to make it a family activity. My first market ever, I had my children give me ideas for wrapping and presentation of the products. The beautiful surprise was to see my children talking about a healthy lifestyle during and after the markets. In short, turn your most feared element into your biggest asset.

. How do you manage to maintain work and your daily life as a mom?

At the beginning it was hard to manage both, but once your kids are bought into the benefit of your dream, everything will flow because you live who you are and they start to live the life you dream for them at a young age! How could this not bring happiness to any mum? … its symbiotic!

One thing you definitely need is your partner’s support, assistance at home, and the power and the will to manage it all.

. What message would you send to other moms to encourage them in pursuing their dreams?

Sacrifice is what we do best as mothers….make it worthwhile by sacrificing for the right things. Raising a family has never been an issue in a woman’s career if you know how to manage and make your family buy in to your dreams… they are your first customers.

With love from a happy working mother,

Rouba (@Mammasgarden).

Working Mother’s Day with maman_chocolat

Jihane: Marketing Manager and owns a home-bakery business

. What are some of the challenges you face as a working mom?

It is hard to manage the time between kids and work – this is my main challenge, to be able to do well, my job – at the same time be a full time mom and not missing any of the activities they have. Also I don’t have someone who can keep my kids so I often have to postpone meetings or skip them because one of them is sick or they don’t have school. This does affect my work as it is also challenging to make it up.

. How do you maintain work and daily life as a mom?

It is very hard to do the 3, but I feel it is a duty and a goal to succeed at work, as a mom, and as a women. So I try as much as possible to divide well my time and use every second of the day wisely. And because during the week I don’t see my kids a lot I give them all my time during the weekend and my only focus is them.

. What message would you send to other moms to encourage them in pursuing their dreams?

I read somewhere that kids who see their mom succeed in a career usually turn out to to be successful too. So it is my main motivation to be an example to my kids and also to make something for them – build their future. It is also good for a woman to work and be indepedent for herself and her self-esteem. So be the person you want to be even if it is hard or if you are tired and feel you won’t make it… At the end of the day the kids will be proud of you and will want to succeed like you.

This is when you will become a super women and a super mom.

Working Mother’s Day with Yasmina Audi

Yasmina Audi Haber: Strategic Marketing director and founder Super Mama Lebanon and The Sparks Factory

. What are some of the challenges you face as a working mom?

A working mother’s number 1 enemy is time. Running and trying to balance quality time with the family, and their needs and being able to run a successful business… 24 hours are sometimes not enough.

. How do you manage to maintain work and your daily life as a mom?

With time as our enemy time management is key. Prioritizing each task and needs, and knowing that your children are the priority so delegating work is key at times.

. What message would you send to other moms to encourage them in pursuing their dreams?

Believe in yourself. Believe in your dreams. Be a role model for your children in pursuing your dream and in turn this will give you the confidence and peace of mind to be the best mom, wife and woman you actually are 💖 good luck super mamas 💖

Our Family Getaway; Tyre

Our family getaway in Tyre has left us with remarkable memories and learning experiences that were attained with pleasure. For our stay, we booked at the Al Yasmine Guest House and spent a lovely time there.

Al Yasmine Guest House: http://www.alyasmineguesthouse.com

We were sincerely touched with the warm welcome the staff provided us with. All five of our children felt free to explore the area, play around, and learn about certain animal behaviors. The whole setting of the resort takes you into a Mexican village where as a guest you are treated with generosity and hospitality.

As parents, we were longing for this tranquility and natural silence where the only sounds we could hear were the quacking of ducks, chirping of birds, and rustling of leaves. The greenery around with delicate colorful begonvillia plants scattered gracefully adds a heavenly lush to the whole scene.

The guest house offers many sportive activities that make a child and an adult enjoy their time together. There is a small playground for little children, a mini-golf, a tennis court, a ping pong table, a basketball hoop, a pool table, babyfoot, two pools, a double seat bicycle, and some horses. The twins were delighted as they fed the cute reindeers caressing them at any given opportunity. Finally, the most enjoyable activity for them was rowing the boat in the lake along the ducks and swans.

The Rooms:

We enjoyed an evening with the owner of the house who told us how, together with her husband, they have designed the rooms and the whole area to receive their children’s friends during the weekend and enjoy their stay together far from the hussle and bustle of the city Beirut. She even made sure not to include any Wi-Fi connection or TV service so one can really disconnect and profit from the peacefulness the House bestows.

On one side of the main house a number of rooms with ravishing mexican interiors are now accessible to the guests and our rooms were of no different. The cleanliness and honesty with which the employers work with are also remarkable. Little D lost her golden bracelet, and I was baffled when the housekeeper found it for us.

The food:

Al Yasmine Guest House offers a selection of a tasty and healthy Lebanese breakfast. In the evening guests have the choice to choose from the menu or have a delicious BBQ along with a selection of appetizing mezzah like fatoush, baked eggplants, spicy potatoes, and mutabal to name a few of my favorite.

Old Tyre:

Since I always aim at educating our children and have them attain general knowledge, we always make sure that we make any trip a learning opportunity. With this intention, we headed to the Necropolis El Bass in Tyre where we told them all about the rich history Lebanon has endured. From the Byzantium Era to the Romanian Vestiges, we walked along its colonaded road passing through whatever was left from those great dynasties.

We continued walking until we reached the huge impressive Hippodrome that used to seat 20000 spectators who gathered to watch the death-defying sport of chariot racing! Standing at the top of the steps, I felt I could hear their loud cheers and boisterous zest, but as I looked around reality hit me sharply knowing that such treasures are not taken care of. It is a shame to have such history stand alone, still with pride, but with a few who really appreciate it.

Along the road, and as we drove through the vast fields of fruit bearing trees, we pointed out to the children the different types that grew on the coast. It is a pleasure to see how even the twins could locate a banana tree and the boys identify the avocado tree!

As a mother, I always long to plan such trips with my family and I care about them learning something new out of it. Pushing them into appreciating nature, history, and be able to spend quality time together are challenging these days, so when it is done with fun, it lives in their memories forever.

I am glad that we have chosen the Al Yasmine Guest House as our relaxing getaway and would like to thank all the staff members again for making us feel that we were at home!

Do not forget to check the video below and to share this post on your social media!